Why? Because slurping your noodles isn’t rude, it actually serves three purposes:
- It cools off your mouthful of noodles just enough to let you enjoy them while the rest of the bowl stays piping hot, and
- It aerates the noodles and the broth, allowing the flavors to mellow out and fully develop before you chew and swallow.
- If you eat your ramen daintily, the process can take a long time and the noodles will get all mushy.
Western etiquette says slurping is bad – and yes, as a result many of us find the sound irritating. And it can be messy with spray… But in some eastern cultures, eating very silently is rude. Like how burping is a compliment to the chef? Either way, ramen shops are often clear about the importance of slurping.